To Cheat and Serve
November 18, 2013 7:35 AM   Subscribe

Harvard and UPenn study shows cheaters prefer public service (PDF) "... university students who cheat on a simple task in a laboratory setting are more likely to state a preference for entering public service." "Students who demonstrate lower levels of pro- social preferences in the laboratory games are also more likely to prefer to enter the government, ..."
posted by zeikka (3 comments total)

This post was deleted for the following reason: This needs to be framed more clearly and without a big ugly google redirect for a link if it's gonna make a workable post. -- cortex

This study was conducted in Karnataka, India.

Government service in India, with its high barrier to termination, and reputation for "earning potential", presents a different degree of attraction for lower and middle-class candidates compared to private or informal sector employment. Generalization to other countries, especially OECD, is limited, I'd say.
posted by Gyan at 7:44 AM on November 18, 2013 [4 favorites]

I think it's important to note that this experiment used students at an Indian university so it's entirely possibly that this finding is not universally applicable especially in cultures where widespread bureaucratic corruption is not the norm.

The lack of a mention of this in this post makes me feel uncomfortable because it seems to suggest that public servants are universally prone to being corrupt but I'm not sure the paper can support such a supposition.
posted by vuron at 7:44 AM on November 18, 2013 [3 favorites]

Nice misleading pull quote. Also, [PDF].
posted by Pogo_Fuzzybutt at 7:46 AM on November 18, 2013 [2 favorites]

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